Batman – The Joker Is Wild / Batman Is Riled

by Alan Rapp on July 5, 2014

in Television Reviews 

  • Title: Batman – The Joker Is Wild / Batman Is Riled
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Batman - Batman Is Riled

In honor of Batman‘s 75th Anniversary we continue to look back at the more memorable moments on the big and small screen. The third two-part episode arc of 1966 Batman TV-series starring Adam West as Batman and Burt Ward as Robin introduced Cesar Romero as the Joker. After escaping incarceration during a prison softball game the Joker returns to seek revenge learning his name hasn’t been included in the first inductees for the Gotham City Museum of Modern Art’s Comedians Hall of Fame.

When his plan to loot the museum is foiled by Batman and Robin and the use of the Dark Knight Detective’s famous utility belt, the Joker decides to create his own ingenuous version which will finally make him Batman’s equal. The two-parter’s cliffhanger comes as the Joker lures the Dynamic Duo to the Gotham Opera and with the help of his new gadgets stymies the heroes and threatens to expose their identities to the world on live television.

Batman - Batman Is Riled

Although his plan is foiled by Batman’s own belt, the Joker’s utility belt manages to get him out of two more jams including one later in the episode where he switches belts with Batman and gets the Caped Crusader to accidentally trap himself allowing the villain to escape yet again. The Joker is finally defeated at the christening of the SS Gotham, which he plans to steal, where after realizing the Joker’s plan Batman and Robin ingest a Universal Drug Antidote Pill to avoid effects of gas meant to knock them unconscious and allow the Dynamic Duo to spring into action and defeat the Joker on live television restoring the faith of Batman and Robin to the citizens of Gotham.

Based on an issue of Detective Comics, the introduction of the Joker’s utility belt and how it is used make for a fun introduction to the character. The ending of the episode was changed from the comic leading to the introduction of one of Batman’s more ludicrous inventions in the Universal Drug Antidote Pill (a pill that stops the harmful effects of any gas). Although Romero wasn’t the first choice for the role, and despite his refusal to shave his mustache, he would quickly make it his own reprising the role in the movie and an additional 20 episodes over Batman‘s three seasons.

heather July 10, 2014 at 9:28 pm

I’m so happy they are finally releasing these old episodes on blu-ray.

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